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Re: A question on palatalization.

From:Tristan <kesuari@...>
Date:Thursday, January 2, 2003, 6:58
Christophe Grandsire wrote:

>For instance, if your language already has phonemic palatals, maybe [t_j] won't >turn into [c]. But then, languages don't seem to mind much abandoning >distinctions, so this is no absolute no-no... >
I know I have no problems with the fact that 'tune' starts with /tS/ and 'dune' and 'June' are identical for me. However, /nj/ remains as /nj/ (in words like 'news'). Is /nj/ less likely to change? (Though come to think of it, the /n/ in 'new' is pronounced further back than the /n/ in 'noon' or 'need'.)
>On the same example, if the >language doesn't have any postalveolar fricative ([S]), maybe [t_j] will turn >anyway into [c], despite the confusion resulting, because if it evolved into >the affricate [t_S], it would create a solitary postalveolar affricate without >a corresponding fricative, and as far as I know it's probably very rare >
But don't let that put you off. Unless I'm mistaken, English has had /dZ/ for some time (in words like 'bridge' < _bricg_, though I think the OE <cg> was a voiced palatal stop originally?) and took some time to develop /Z/.* Or it may always do [t_j] > [tS] > [S]. I'm sure someone can come up with an example of that. I know French did [tS] > [S], though it's [tS] sound started it's life off as a [k] (but how it gets somewhere is probably irrelevant to where it goes). *Which makes me wonder why. Why didn't biscop become */bIZ@p/, even allophonically? I understand long fricatives in Old English weren't voiced, could this have been long then?
>(languages don't seem to like to have orphans in their sound inventories. But >then again, that's just a tendency, like any language "universal"). >
Really? English seems to hate this tendency, with many dialects having /ei/ but no [e], /ou/ but no [o]. And the point about Old English above ;) And a question related to palatisation... [ki] and [ik] in various languages go have palatisation of the [k] to [tS], [S], [s] or similar sounds (Old English, Italian, French, probably dozens of others I don't know of...). This I understand to be because the frontness of the /i/ pulls the /k/ away from the back of the mouth. However, velars seems to pull other vowels towards /i/ or /I/---OE _thenc_ became 'think', 'England' is pronounced with an /I/, enque > ink, or the fact that the only places a /I/ is allowed in an unstressed syllable (and there it's required, hammock /"h&mIk/) in my dialect of English is before velars and post-alveolars (/tS, Z/ etc). I had some more examples but I've forgotten them. Is there any reason for this? Why would a sound commit suicide, as it were? Tristan Tristan - Yahoo! Movies - What's on at your local cinema?


John Cowan <jcowan@...>
Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>